[EM] World Series and EC

Alexander Small asmall at physics.ucsb.edu
Thu Jan 31 11:09:06 PST 2002

Regarding the post arguing that the world series was close in number of
games won but not in number of home runs:

I had this argument by e-mail with Alan Natapoff, who has argued that the
EC gives more power per voter than popular elections.  The main difference
is that elections pick leaders, while baseball is serious business ;)
Voters are people with rights while homeruns are points scored in games, so
winning more voters but not many states is not the same as winning more
runs but not many games.

If a team scores a bunch of runs one game, but not in any other, one can
conclude that the team was just lucky that night.  Overall they could not
sustain that success against the same opponent under the same rules.
Winning a bunch of voters but not in the right distribution of states is
different, because every state has different demographics, concerns, etc.
You can't really say that each state posed the same contest, so the overall
contest is the only meaningful thing, not the individual, heterogeneous
state contests.

Alex Small

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